The Edmonton Oilers have a few interesting rookies this year: Philip Broberg and Dylan Holloway.
Broberg’s development has trended upward year after year since he was drafted 8th overall in 2019. While he may not have had the early impacts in the NHL others selected after him did, the more and more we hear about him the more and more I think this is a guy who can be a legit player for the Oilers.
There’s been some loose comparisons to a guy like Oscar Klefbom, who took a few years to develop before becoming a key piece of the Oilers roster in the mid-to-late 2010s. If Broberg can become that for Edmonton, that would be huge. He’s a homegrown talent who played some of his best hockey ever under Jay Woodcroft and Dave Manson last year in Bakersfield.
In 31 games in the minors last year, he scored four goals and 23 points. He also drew in for 23 NHL games last year, too, and while he looked shaky at times, you could see some of that talent that was there. He played a quiet game in a third pairing role, and that’s far from the worst thing.
Oilers GM Ken Holland was on Oilers now the other day, and host Bob Stauffer paraphrased on Twitter that a spot on the team will be his to lose.
Holloway, meanwhile, will be looking to get a full season under his belt in the pros. He joined the Condors part way through the season last year and got off to super hot start, before cooling off a bit as his time progressed there. By the end of the season, he appeared in 33 games scoring eight goals and 22 points. In the playoffs, he tallied another four points in five games.
The gritty forward also got to come up to Edmonton last year drawing in for a playoff game, and hanging out around the team amid a monumental run through the LA Kings and Calgary Flames.
Holloway is another guy who is going to get a huge chance to excell. He’s player that fits the bill of what the Oilers need. A speedy, shifty winger with great hands and some real edge to his game. By ear, it sounds like he’s a physical player who is never afraid of contact, or mucking it up after the whistle. Without trying to put any expectations on him, could he be a less offensively potent Evander Kane at this point in time? We’ll see.
Stauffer also mentioned in his aforementioned tweet that Holloway will be in for a battle on the roster and will have to be on the ice every night, or he’s bound for the American League.
Nonetheless, both players are still playing on entry-level deals and given the cap crunch the team is facing heading into this season, they need cheap players like Broberg and Holloway. They’ll be two of the biggest stories heading into training camp this season, and I can’t wait to see what they do.